Sunday, March 31, 2019

Picking, carding and treasure hunting.

It's been a busy two weeks with lots of nifty finds and a box filled with raw fleece.  Raw fleece you ask?  Many of you know that I have spinning wheels and spin fiber for my personal use;  my son and his wife took a detour from sending my grandson off to South Korea as part of his Army tour to historical Williamsburg.  (One of my favorite places to visit)  My son chatted up the manager/curator of the rare breeds sheep ranch and ended up purchasing and shipping to me, five pounds of Leicester Longwool fleece.   The Leicester Longwool is one of the "luster longwool" breeds, so designed for the sheen and brilliance of their wool.  Here is a link to the Livestock Conservancy Foundation if you would like to read up on this marvelous group.

Five pounds of freshly sheered fleece "in the grease".  This is what it looks like in all of its dirty, crusty, doodie-dirt-dried grass and lanolin filled raw self.  (heaven I tell ya, heaven)

The first of several baths to remove the dirt and lanolin from the fleece after I picked out the grass and dirt/doodie clumps.  Not the most pleasant of tasks but it must be done.   It took 6 baths and rinses before the water was clean and no longer the color of mud.

Heavy, wet but clean fleece still looks golden as it dried in the sunshine on a huge, beach towel.  It reminds me of my favorite mythology story, "Jason and the Argonaut's and the Quest for the Golden Fleece."

Once completely dry it takes on a lovely white lustre and now I'm ready to begin the hand carding to prepare it for spinning.

A  basket filled with hand carded fleece looks like the wings of an angel.  It is so light and airy and feels like silk.  I have a lot more to card before I can begin spinning so I will be a busy gal over the next few weeks.

In between my fleece prep I did a little antiquing and found marvelous treasure.

Bicentennial wall plate commemorating the 13 original colonies by Carson Pewter.

I don't come across genuine antique copper often and this smaller bundt pan is a beaut.  It is in my personal collection hanging on the wall in my kitchen.

My gal pals know my weakness for antique American basketry and this was a find at one of my favorite shops in Port Richey, "Junk Co."

Another find that went right into my display cabinet.  A nearly perfect, Early American Pressed Glass (EAPG) sugar shaker with original pewter top.  This will get used when my grandchildren come to visit and they need to sprinkle powdered sugar on their french toast or pancakes.


The last time I found an advertising mixing bowl in the wild was nearly 30 years ago.  It was fun to see this one fall into my lap

Lovely 19th century transferware low bowl.  Soft blue transfer with hand painted details.

This was a great find at my local Goodwill.  A huge bag filled with antique and vintage silverplate and a few sterling spoons as well. 

A yard sale find, five sherbets marked Hawkes.  Beautiful cut and engraved pieces from the Hawkes Crystal Company.

This lovely quadruple late basket polished up just lovely and has joined my other pieces.

Vintage pyrex is the hottest collectible going right now and I lucked into this piece called Terra.  The only matt finish produced it was too labor intensive to produce the pattern so it only was made for one year in 1964.   

Lovely pair of cut to clear crystal wine goblets with pretty shamrocks around the cup.

Just call me Eve and pass me an apple.  This real looking snake is a marvelous folk art piece that the artist saw in the natural root.  The root was carved and painted to look like a real snake and despite of the various repairs along the tail, it look like the real thing.  I had to bring it home and "Luse" now resides among my antiques in the foyer. 

Without a doubt, this has been a fun two weeks with my sister visiting last weekend, my prepping that pile of golden fleece for spinning on my production wheel and finding such a variety of marvelous treasure.  Loving the longer days now that the clocks are back where they should be and even the palm pollen can't slow down our delightful spring weather.  I hope everyone is also feeling the spring and wishing blessings to you and those you love.  Sea Witch

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